Sexual Identity In Purple Hibiscus

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longer followed by feelings of guilt that papa’s moralistic Christian worldview provoked in her earlier. Even though his teenage romance does not end happily from kambili’s viewpoint, her relationship with father Amadi is a strongly empowering one: not only does it allow her to find her sexual identity, but it also allows her to find a more tolerant and liberal interpretation, of religiousness and, above all, the courage of questioning. Later, father Amadi, with his tender and supportive attitude, becomes a new masculine authority for kambili, who believes that “his word is true” (302). Kambili’s admiration of father Amadi signals yet again her desperate need for a father figure. While the focus is Purple Hibiscus is admittedly the national, the transnational dimension represents an important narrative bypath. This is the case with Purple Hibiscus as well: in Ouma’s words, the novel is “informed by the experiences of movement and contact with other words”(49). kambili’s father’s sister, aunty Ifeoma, works as a lecturer at Nsukka University, where the country’s flaws are flagrantly visible: unpaid salaries, authoritarian management, and career stagnation are driving staff members into exile. The idea of leaving raises diverse feelings in kambili’s cousins. The oldest cousin, Amaka, feels that leaving means running away, and she asks her brother whether the problems of the crisis-ridden country cannot be fixed. “Fix what?” (232), reads the brother’s ironical,
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